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Indian Man Opens ‘Rice ATM’ For People in Need–Using $75k Life Savings to Help Others

Ramu Dosapati earns his living as a corporate HR executive, but it’s the selfless spin he’s put on “human resources” in his private life that makes him truly remarkable.

In 2020, hardships brought on by heavy flooding and compounded by the added limitations of the COVID-19 lockdown left many migrant workers in the Hyderabad region of India stranded without means of support. Dosapati, who lives with his family there, has made it his mission to ensure the area’s struggling workers won’t go without food and other essential items.

To ease the migrant workers’ burden, Dosapati has spent ₹50 lakh of his own funds (close to $61,000) to establish and run a ‘Rice ATM’, doling out rice and other necessities 24 hours a day, seven days a week to those in need.

His first step along the road to altruism began simply enough, but he had no way of knowing then just how far his journey would take him, and the amount of good he would do along the way.

Dosapati had gone to the store to pick up the makings for his son’s birthday dinner. While at the shop, he noticed a woman buying an enormous quantity of chicken—close to $2,500 dollars’ worth, in fact.

Intrigued, he couldn’t help but ask her purpose in buying so much poultry. As it turned out, the woman, a security guard who works at a camp for migrant workers, was buying it as a special treat for residents there who’d run out of food.

“When I asked her about her salary, she said it was ₹6,000. That made me think that if a lady with ₹6,000 salary can spend ₹2,000 on the needy, why can’t I do the same?” Dosapati told Business Insider India.

Soon after, Dosapati accompanied the security guard to the camp, where he made a list of close to 200 people in need of assistance. He quickly realized, however, the initial investment he’d allotted would only last a few days.

Undaunted, Dosapati cashed in his retirement fund, and working with a local merchant, opened the Rice ATM cum food pantry. But Dospati wasn’t finished.

While he’d been working toward moving his family into a larger home and had already sold a parcel of ancestral land to secure funding, when Dosapati learned yet another new group of workers had arrived seeking aid, with the blessings of his family, he put those dreams on hold.

“That’s when my wife supported me and asked me to go ahead and carry on with the initiative,” he said.

Since the Rice ATM launched this past April, word of Dosapati’s generosity has made the rounds. With support from a number of outside sources now pouring in, the man who has truly put the “human” in human resources says he hopes to keep resources flowing for those in need for a long time to come.